Van's RV-9A in Aurora

The Big Picture

The Big Picture
Flying! 8/28/2011

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Horizontal Stabilizer

Put in 6 hrs today. And 2.5 other hours since the last post. Since then, assembled and match drilled the rear spar, doubler, and hinge brackets, followed by deburring. Cleaned up the front and rear spar pieces. That's a lot of work! Finish work has never been my strong suit. The first challenge is trying to find the right files. There doesn't seem to be a fine round or half round file at any of the usual stores, or at Avery, Isham, etc. Settled on starting with needle files for all of the round corners and lightening holes.
On the long spar edges, I would remove all shearing marks and get completely down to bright metal with a bastard file, including rounding the corners and edges. This tended to scratch the inside of the spar so masking tape was put on the end of the files and on the inside of the spar. Also ended up with tape on the outside face of the spar, since my vice was scratching the metal, even though it's made of wood. The filings were the culprit, but the tape prevents any scratches.

Three down, one to go.

The rough filing was followed by a finer file. For the doublers and the first spar, just used the scotchbrite wheel to finish. But discovered the magic of emory cloth. After filing with the subsequent spars, used medium and then fine emory cloth, and then the scotchbrite wheel. Happy with the results. It would be beneficial to spend a few hours doing this under the watchful eye of someone with lots of experience.

A dowel is handy for sanding the insides of curves

Today, finished the spars including the lightening holes, and cleaned up the HS ribs. The ribs didn't need that much work, compared to the spars. About 1.5 hours for all 16 pieces, compared to 5 hours for the spars. Total time 8.5 since last post.

Ribs ready for straightening.

Also today, the Avery squeezer finally arrived. Along with some other odds and ends, placed in two different orders. I imagine I'm starting to irritate the Avery people, but I discovered a few items I was going to need soon and decided to place an order. Then realized the HS would need more than 100 3/32 clecoes, so ordered another 100 (and some back riveting tools).

Yet more tools.

Tomorrow, fluting, the HS jig, and then something that actually looks like an airplane part!